New Zealand Law Society - Pay equity recommendations accepted by Government

Pay equity recommendations accepted by Government

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State Services Minister Paula Bennett says the Government has accepted the recommendations of the Joint Working Group on Pay Equity, and will update the Equal Pay Act 1972 and amend the Employment Relations Act 2000.

The Joint Working Group reported back earlier this year with a number of recommendations, including:

  • Principles to provide guidance to employers and employees in identifying, assessing and resolving pay equity claims.
  • A process for employers and employees to follow to address pay equity, including a bargaining process based on the Employment Relations Act framework.

The Government's summary of its responses to the Joint Working Group shows that it has agreed to all recommendations.

Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Michael Woodhouse says the Government has also decided to supplement the Joint Working Group’s recommendations to clarify how to choose an appropriate job for comparison when making a pay equity claim.

“This was an area the Joint Working Group was not able to agree on. However, the Government believes this needs to be addressed to ensure the process is clear and effectively addresses pay equity claims for all parties.

The Government says it expects to introduce a Bill in 2017 to implement the changes.

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